Several more friends flew in this morning – Chuck and Kathy, Jeff, David, and Shona, as we made our way to Greve in the Chianti region of Tuscany. We have rented a lovely villa to share with our friends in the heart of this gorgeous countryside.
On our way, we stopped in the medieval hilltop town of Orvieto, which has been around since 800 B.C. It was built on top of a volcanic mountain, which provided greater safety from attacks. It came into its own in the early 1200s when five popes lived there over the course of a century.
The town is divided into four quarters, with a long straight walkway that extends from one end of town to the other. If you venture to Orvieto, be sure to stray off the main path near the far end of town to take in some of the most spectacular Tuscan views - breathtaking!
The crown jewel of this great town is its cathedral. It immediately reminded me of the duomo in Siena. In fact, our guide, Jon Pietro, shared that the same architect designed both!
Construction began on the cathedral in the late 1200s and wasn’t fully complete until the late 1500s. Mass had just ended when we arrived and it happened to be first communion day for the village children. Happy families were everywhere! Can you imagine calling this ornate structure your local church?!
After a lovely lunch, and some window shopping (and wine purchasing), we made our way to our home in Greve for the next week.
We were treated to an incredible Neapolitan pizza dinner by Chef Nando, who demonstrated how to cook them. Tomorrow includes wine tasting and relaxing at this beautiful villa. Buona Notte!